Tuesday, September 6, 2011

WMTMQR: There shall be no TMQR

What a bummer. How could this be? The guy writes an entire column centered around making predictions for all 32 teams in haiku format--yes, haiku format--and I can't find anything in it really worth picking on. Seems ridiculous but it's the case. I dunno, maybe I'm going soft in my old age. Maybe Gregg has written moronic drivel intentionally all these years and decided to cut his act this week. Maybe all this hoping to one day study law is giving me some kind of a mental block. Whatever the reason, Gregg gets a pass this week. I'm sure he'll be back to his old tricks next Tuesday, speculating that Team X kicked a 48 yard field goal on 4th and 12 that made the score 24-3 early in the third quarter because Team X's coach was trying to avoid having a shutout on his resume.

And since there's no TMQR I think I will turn this into a grab bag of a post. When you live in your Grandma's basement (my parents recently gave me the heave-ho out of theirs because I was too busy writing about baseball without knowing what sunlight feels like to help them with the chores), you can do whatever you want with your blogoblog.

Speaking of basement dwelling trolls who know nothing about how baseball actually works, I can't wait for the release of the Moneyball movie because 1) it looks like a decent flick and 2) it'll give crusty old fuckasses like Plaschke a chance to roll out the same sorry criticisms of Beane and his methods they've been rolling out for five or six years now. HEY THE A'S NEVER WON A WORLD SERIES SO THAT PROVES BEANE KNOWS NOTHING. AND LOOK, THE A'S HAVEN'T BEEN GOOD FOR SEVERAL SEASONS WHICH ALSO PROVES THAT BEANE'S MANAGERIAL METHODS DID NOT STAND THE TEST OF TIME.

Moving on. I need to make couple apologies.

To Jeff Pearlman: you were right. Jason Bay is fucking terrible. He's not terrible for the reasons you said he'd be terrible, but he's terrible all the same. You saw it coming. A feather in your cap, sir. And I still want my free copy of The Rocket That Fell To Earth whenever you get a chance.

To Phillies fans: I was wrong. Despite a buttshit lineup (team OPS+ of 97), your team is going to win like 103 games. Good for them. I hope they win their first two against the Diamondbacks easily, then drop the next two in Arizona, and then lose game five at home as Ryan Howard strikes out looking with the game winning runs on base. As long as your team is going to have a starting staff capable of annual regular season success, the least I can wish upon your cavalcade of trashball moron fans is a devastatingly painful annual playoff disappointment. Worst of luck to you in October.

Finally, a minor rant. After realizing TMQ had nothing to offer me this week I moved on to a well that never runs dry- CBS's Scott Miller. He wrote a column about who deserves to win baseball's individual awards this season. It was actually pretty inoffensive minus this little bit of cognitive dissonance:

Ah yes, finally, in the year 2011, even mouth-breathers like Miller understand that pitching wins are a pretty useless statistic. But runs scored? Now there's something you can set your watch to.

That's not where I'm going with this, though. Where I'm going is directly into the eye (with a sharp object) of anyone who wants to say that Justin Upton is worthy of winning the MVP. Now I don't hate Upton, he's a good player who's had a good year. But there's a problem that prevents me from saying he should win big-time hardware: I'm a Rockies fan. And I will never, ever, ever, ever stop being furious with writers who diminish the accomplishments of any Rockie because of the Coors Field effect while ignoring the home/road splits of every other player in the league. Yes, many Rockies have sizable differences between their road and home numbers. Yes, lots of non-Rockies have the exact same problem. No, this criticism is never leveled against them and it makes me want to throw puppies off a cliff.

Such is the case with Upton this year, hitting .348/.427/.641 at Chase and .246/.331/.444 everywhere else. If the Rockies and Diamondbacks switched spots in the standings and Carlos Gonzalez had Upton's splits, you'd never hear the end of how Gonzalez is nothing but a guy who's lucky to play half his games at Coors and would otherwise be a 4th outfielder. Chase isn't Coors, but it's a pretty solid hitter's park. Don't expect the average baseball writer to know that. Instead it's all DERP DERP DERP LOLCOORS DERP. Any writer who gives his or her #1 vote to Upton this year but didn't give his or her #1 vote to "Coors Creation" Matt Holliday in 2007 (.301/.374/.485 on the road) should be immediately dragged into the nearest town square and beaten to death with bricks. That is all.


Chris W said...

I want to speak up in favor of runs. I mean, not as a stat to justify an MVP vote, but as a stat that is better than RBI. At least runs scored is tied directly to something a hitter can control. Viz, OBP

Larry B said...

I think it's negligibly different. Sure, getting on base is a more valuable skill than "putting the ball into play," but it's still entirely dependent on the actions of your teammates (excepting HRs). And there's no such thing as a solid RBI guy who doesn't get plenty of hits. If I were a GM, and I had a scout tell me "we can sign one of two players, and the only things I can tell you about them are that one gets a ton of runs and the other gets a ton of RBIs, that piece of information wouldn't help my decision at all.

Chris W said...

IMO (and in the opinion of lots of stats guys) it's not negligibly different. Pretty much everyone gets around the same number of hits--between 150-200. Therefore, if you get on base a lot your runs scored will almost certainly score a lot of runs.

As we all know, OBP varies wildly, and we've all seen examples of how some shithead like Ryan Howard will come to the plate with runners on base shitloads more times than some other random MVP caliber hitter.

Chris W said...

Last sentence of my first paragraph up there is pretty terrible grammatically.

Adam said...

Speaking of Phillies fans:


pnoles said...

Jimmy Rollins led the league in outs in 2007, so I voted for him instead.

Chris W said...

You can't make outs unless you're a leadoff hitter and has there ever been a Championship team without a leadoff hitter? I rest my case